Bathurst Observatory Research Facility

Bathurst NSW Australia

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https://www.facebook.com/BathurstObservatory/

Bathurst Observatory Research Facility is an observatory site primarily for education, research and study, though we do offer general public viewing nights.

Open Nights Star Tours Available Now (conditions and limits apply)

Open Nights Star Tours

Bookings will be essential for all tours.

(All tours subject to weather)

NEWS: Tours begin at the new site

Tours are underway at the new site. The site is not complete yet, however, are able to offer tours to help complete other facilities.

Tours will be generally be available any clear Friday and Saturday nights, however, we can also offer some tours, mid week for groups of 5 or more. Check to see if I am available.

Any clear Friday and Saturday Nights!!!

Note, Bathurst Observatory has moved and under construction!!!!

The new site, opened during 2020 and offers better sky, better viewing opportunities and a more unique experience.

No tours in the week of Full Moon.

Bookings essential.

Please note that the main telescope is pretty big and requires use of a small stepladder for viewing. Please advise if you would have difficulties with steps and we can set up a different telescope.

* There may be some mid week research nights where tours are not available.

Reduced Tours Prices for groups

Costs :

As the site is not yet complete with all facilities, we are asking for donation towards completion (an amount you think is fair for the tour and my time).

(Note: we have NO credit card facilities)

Tour bookings and Enquiries, phone (0427292214 Please leave a message as we screen out spam calls), or email us. (Email is by far the best way to get us, if you don’t get a reply it means you have us blocked!!! Please change your settings!).

How to find us? See Location!

Why “Open Nights”?

Bathurst Observatory in eveningWe used to do tours in the observatory dome. However, we found that the dome itself blocked out most of the night sky! Our visitors wanted to view through a telescope but be able to see and hear about the wonders of the night sky at the same time. We particularly had many visitors from urban areas wanting to see a nice dark country sky full of stars. The solution, set up the public telescope as nature wanted us to, on cleared ground next to the observatory, under the wonder of the Southern stars.

Our tours are conducted with the only guide with over fifteen years educational astronomy experience and with Bachelor of Education Honours Degree! Our guide is also an internationally recognised expert in the field of meteorites.

Tours require bookings and are weather dependent. (We can’t see stars through clouds!) Tour duration is about 1 hour, depending on time of year.

We cater for all school astronomy and space excursions, as well as general public telescope tours of the night sky. Primarily we offer our open night tours to inspire everyone to look to the night sky.

The Milky Way stretches overhead in this view taken at the Bathurst Observatory Research Facility - 6th July 2013The Milky Way stretches overhead in this view taken at the Bathurst Observatory Research Facility.
The Bathurst Observatory Research Facility (Research and Meteorite Related Enquires and Public Viewing Nights)

The Bathurst Observatory Research Facility, located on the current site on Limekilns Road north east of Bathurst. At the research site, we study, comets, asteroids, variable stars, meteors and meteorites. For research related enquires please email us.

We also welcome any enquires or questions you may have on Astronomy, Space or meteorite related matters.

Our FaceBook page https://www.facebook.com/BathurstObservatory/ is regularly updated, so have a look for the latest news and images from the observatory.

Other Tours

Museum

Solar Telescope Tours (Viewing the Sun)

On occasions, we are able to offer daytime telescope views of the sun. We have a special telescope that allows you to SAFELY view the sun. At present the availability of these tours will depend on three factors.

  1. that I’m available on the day.
  2. it is not cloudy.
  3. that the sun has some active features.

The third point is important, as sometimes the sun can be quiet and not as interesting to see.

These tours will be about 15 minutes in duration and by gold coin donation. Bookings for a solar tour would be essential.

Donate to Bathurst Observatory

We would really appreciate your support!

Bathurst Observatory is in the process of moving to a new location. All facilities are currently being rebuilt.
Your Contribution of any amount will go towards:
$1000 for the crane, $5500 for the Observatory Foundations and Telescope Pier, $3500 for the Public Viewing Area.

Keep up to date with our latest News.
Please Subscribe to our Newsletter.

We value your privacy and do not share your information.

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There was much excitement over last night massive Auroral storm (rightly so!!). The conditions have settled for the time being so I again turned my attention on a rare clear night to how comet Pons Brooks is going. The comet is showing a nice dust anti tail, as well as ion and dust tails. Image 12th May. I likely won't image the comet again until after the Moon has passed out of the evening sky. ... See MoreSee Less

There was much excitement over last night massive Auroral storm (rightly so!!). The conditions have settled for the time being so I again turned my attention on a rare clear night to how comet Pons Brooks is going. The comet is showing a nice dust anti tail, as well as ion and dust tails. Image 12th May. I likely wont image the comet again until after the Moon has passed out of the evening sky.

Comment on Facebook

Brilliant. Is the Aurora visible tonight??

There is so much happening out there. Lovely shot of the comet.

Colin Pickstone

Despite a LOT of cloud, I was able to see and image a few glimpses of the Auroral storm on the late evening of the 11th of May. The pink colour was visible to the eye. I was surprised how bright it was. If only I had a larger break in the clouds, as the vertical banding was muted by the cloud haze. I guess though, the clouds did make it more eerie. These images were around 11:00pm. ... See MoreSee Less

Despite a LOT of cloud, I was able to see and image a few glimpses of the Auroral storm on the late evening of the 11th of May.  The pink colour was visible to the eye. I was surprised how bright it was. If only I had a larger break in the clouds, as the vertical banding was muted by the cloud haze. I guess though, the clouds did make it more eerie. These images were around 11:00pm.Image attachmentImage attachment

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For those asking if it will happen again tonight--- as the solar storm which caused it is not as big as the previous two it is not touted to be as bright as it was over the past few nights. Please note cameras pick up more light than the human eye- so what you see in photos is NOT what you see in real life (maybe a haze and some beams if you're lucky)..... And if you DO decide to go out and try to capture it--- rug up-- it kinda gets cold out there in the middle of the night) 😉

Thoughts on tonight's possibilty?

Sydney was pouring-an aurora is on the bucket list. Dang.

Great pics Ray considering that cloud last night 👍

Awesome photos

Glenda Twemlow now you’ve seen it !!

Very nice 👍

Lovely.

Amelia Williamson

Sue Priest

Melanie Hibbert Adam Brace

Margaret Vanags Lynn Scully

Tania Dalzell

Nic Booth

Tabitha

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A quick image of Comet Pons Brooks on the 6th of May. This was still in twilight as I had to beat incoming cloud (clouded over just in prime imaging time!). If I can capture it out of twilight, there should be a lot more detail! ... See MoreSee Less

A quick image of Comet Pons Brooks on the 6th of May. This was still in twilight as I had to beat incoming cloud (clouded over just in prime imaging time!). If I can capture it out of twilight, there should be a lot more detail!

Comment on Facebook

No chance here Ray....well done. You were right about the weather. Rot your socks wouldn't it?

Oh so the comet ☄️ is still hanging around I thought it would be long gone. I’ve not managed to see it yet.

Nice shot. Clouds here in Cudal that cleared just before it dropped into the trees.

Yep, another good viewing tonight.

Too much cloud to get the telescope ready, so just popped the camera on a tripod for this quick image of 12P Comet Pons Brooks on the 5th of May. I have had a run (like most) of cloudy weather during this optimum time for imaging.

Don't forget June tour dates posted yesterday!
... See MoreSee Less

Too much cloud to get the telescope ready, so just popped the camera on a tripod for this quick image of 12P Comet Pons Brooks on the 5th of May. I have had a run (like most) of cloudy weather during this optimum time for imaging. 

Dont forget June tour dates posted yesterday!

Comment on Facebook

Here is a shot i got from Cudal tonight, too wet underfoot to setup the scope and mount, so i did the same - Camera on tripod . The only cloud was right where you don't want 😑

I have been pretty booked up for May, so here are some June tour dates....
June 1st (TBC)
June 14th and 15th
and June 21st and 22nd

Tours are still donation entry, bookings essential and tours this time of year are 7:30pm. Book via email or message.

In other news, bit of a disappointing weekend weather wise. The cloud has meant no comet images while it is at its best, no meteor shower visible and also no tours for those people who had booked in weeks ago.
... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Can I please book myself and my son for 15th June

Can we please rebook for 3 if it goes ahead on the 1st June please?

Pat Drury Hannah would love this

Still some twilight, but at last some detail in comet Pons Brooks on the 27th of April.

I've had a lot of enquires for tours lately but admit to being pretty well booked until mid May. I will post available tour dates as soon as I can, once past the rush!
... See MoreSee Less

Still some twilight, but at last some detail in comet Pons Brooks on the 27th of April.

Ive had a lot of enquires for tours lately but admit to being pretty well booked until mid May. I will post available tour dates as soon as I can, once past the rush!

Comment on Facebook

Looks amazing. How do you find it in the sky? We have both a small telescope and binoculars.

So how long will it take until we can’t see it is coming closer or is it leaving?

Through our binoculars pending which way i have the lens focused it can look like a glittery patch or i get a bright glittery tail. Looks awesome

Thank you for putting up your photos.

The beautiful Outer space

ooh can make out the green, that's something to do with it's temperature and composition

Christine Parish

Nicki HitchenCallan

James Haiky Truong

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Comet Pons Brooks, 26th April. I managed to get a nice image, just as the Moon was rising. From tomorrow, I should be able to get it in moonless sky (hence why I guess lots of rain and cloud is predicted next week!).

The comet's complex tails are starting to reveal themselves. It has both, dust and ion tails in a few forms.
... See MoreSee Less

Comet Pons Brooks, 26th April. I managed to get a nice image, just as the Moon was rising. From tomorrow, I should be able to get it in moonless sky (hence why I guess lots of rain and cloud is predicted next week!). 

The comets complex tails are starting to reveal themselves. It has both, dust and ion tails in a few forms.

Comment on Facebook

Great shot. I'm going to give it a go tomorrow, saw it in the scope for the first time tonight, not much smoke tonight.

Nice work I am just processing my image from tonight

WOOOOW that's amazing

I must be looking in the wrong spot (lithgow)

Magic shots

Beautiful

Matthew Jarrett

Warren Robins

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